Postgame: Twins pass 1,000-strikeout mark
- Blog Post by: Phil Miller
- August 14, 2013 - 7:41 PM
A few extra nuggets from a long day at Target Field:
-- It took extra innings to do it, but the Twins struck out 11 times on Wednesday, the sixth time in August they've reached double digits. They also became the second American League team (and third in the majors) to surpass 1,000 strikeouts on the season, and now have 1,007 in all.
It's the 10th time they've eclipsed 1,000, and they're clearly going to set a new team record -- perhaps by Labor Day. The current high-K mark is 1,121, set by the 1997 Twins, but the current players are on pace to rack up 1,381.
-- I was shocked to discover that Joe Mauer's game-tying home run off Chris Perez in the 10th inning marked the first time in his career he had homered in extra innings. But perhaps even more shocking was the outcome of the game: A loss, despite Mauer's five hits. The Twins had been 4-0 when he matched his career high.
Mauer said he wasn't trying to hit a home run when he batted with one out in the 10th; he was just trying to get on base for Justin Morneau, who had already collected two hits on the day behind him. But in the 12th, with two outs and nobody on?
"I took a couple of chances today," he admitted. But he struck out to end the game.
The four RBIs were a season-high for Mauer, too, though far below his career high of seven, set in 2010.
-- Also shocking: Glen Perkins' giving up a home run to Carlos Santana to lead off the 10th inning.
Maybe the most surprising part was that he was out there at all; only once this season, when he entered a game in Anaheim in the eighth inning, had Perkins appeared in more than one inning. But with five relievers already used ahead of him and the game tied, Ron Gardenhire undoubtedly was worried about running out of pitchers. (The situation was more dire than we realized, actually, because Gardenhire said after the game that he was not going to use Anthony Swarzak, who pitched two innings on Tuesday, under any circumstances. So he was down to just Perkins and Ryan Pressly.)
Anyway, Perkins looked like he was headed toward the loss -- something that has not happened since April 15, 2012 -- until Mauer's home run got him off the hook.
It was the fourth home run that Perkins has allowed this year (not a save situation, however, so no blown save), and the second one to Santana. Matter of fact, Santana is now the only hitter in baseball to have homered off Perkins three times in his career.
© 2014 Star Tribune